At his Thursday morning press conference, House Speaker John Boehner said he was "stunned" by the resignation this week of Illinois Rep. Aaron Schock.
"I think Mr. Schock made a decision," Boehner said, adding that he hasn't spoken to Schock. "Frankly, I support the decision he made."
Boehner said he and the rest of the American people expect their representatives to be held to high ethical standards, and that there are "ample controls" in place to make sure they are.
"Understand something: If somebody's going to violate the rules, they're gonna violate the rules," he said. "In almost every case, sooner or later, it catches up to you."
The speaker, appearing in his first press conference since the results of Tuesday's Israeli national election were announced, also congratulated Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his Likud Party's victory. The speaker had invited the right-wing Netanyahu to speak to a joint session of Congress earlier this month, two weeks before the election, in what was a highly politicized event.
"The prime minister recognizes the grave threats that we face from radical Islam and from Iran, as he talked about in his speech to Congress," Boehner said. "This is an opportunity to renew our commitment to confront these threats and, of course, continue to strengthen the bond between Israel and America."
Boehner opened the press conference with a not-too-detailed update on the House GOP budget released Tuesday, saying he expects the Budget Committee to approve its proposal while acknowledging the "overwhelming support" for additional national security expenditures.
The House and Senate budgets released this week differ significantly over defense spending—which may make it difficult for the Republican-led chambers to agree on a central plan. Each budget is causing intra-chamber strife, too.
The Senate is sweating over the tight margin that its budget has for passage, and more-hawkish members are rebelling against the lack of increase in defense monies. In the House, the plan gives a significant boost to defense, but some conservative representatives are concerned about measures that could increase the deficit. And House GOP hawks want even more money for the military, beyond the spending cap implemented under the 2011 sequestration law.
House hawks have pushed the speaker to allocate more funds for the baseline defense budget. But House leaders think adding to the baseline budget would cause a series of problems, including triggering automatic cuts to nondefense discretionary spending.
This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal.